British consumer confidence breaks records as end of 2015 nears

Consumer confidence among British shoppers remained strong for the whole of 2015, according to new figures, the first time the Index has shown positive scores for a whole calendar year as the economy finally rebuilds.

gfk consumer dec 2015

The overall Index score, compiled by GfK, increased one point to +2 in December. Consumer confidence around personal finances increased by two points this month to +3, nine points higher than December 2014.

The forecast for personal finances over the next 12 months has increased three points to +9 this month, which is eight points higher than December 2014.

However, there was bad news for retailers as the major purchase index decreased two points this month to +7. Many high street stores are already offering big discounts on their products as concerns grow over consumer spending this festive period due to the unseasonably warm weather and reduced footfall.

Commenting on the company’s final report for 2015, Joe Staton, head of market dynamics at GfK, says: “Against a backdrop of the booming UK job market, combined with continuing levels of low-inflation and interest rates, UK consumers continue to remain resolutely upbeat about their own personal economic situation and even enthusiastic when thinking about the outlook for next 12 months.”

Meanwhile, confidence around the general economic situation of the country increased one point to -5 in December, which is five points higher than this time last year.

Expectations for the future aren’t as rosy. Confidence for the UK economy over the next 12 months has stayed the same at -6 – one point lower compared to last year’s outlook.

Staton explains: “We remain less optimistic in our outlook for the general economic situation for the country in face of mixed economic, social and political news from the wider world.”

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